Friday, January 16, 2009

Nutritional Shortcuts

You will never weigh everything!

I'm busy, you're busy...I like to tell my DH that even we SAHM's are more busy then anyone else (our job is 24-7). That being the case, the idea that you'll measure every single thing you'll eat or drink is unrealistic. The trick to life-long change is Ease With Your Lifestyle. If preparing food on Saturday and freezing the food for the coming week is best for you, do it. If sticking your car, pocket book, brief case, desk, etc is better for you? Do it! There is no right or wrong. Everyone was led down a different path, even though we all ended up with those extra pounds. So you're path to being healthy won't be the same as anyone else.

So, how do you know you're eating the right portion size without breaking out the scale for every meal? Well, there are tricks we nutritionists use. It's really the easiest way...but you must be honest with yourself. If you'll eat 2 servings it's ok, just exercise that much more to burn the extra calories. So you don't need to close one eye and stand on your left foot with your right fingers crossed in order to say it was a single serving.

Here are the visual tricks to determining Serving Size:
  • A rounded handful - one 1/2 cup vegetables or fruit, 1/2 cup of cooked rice or pasta, or a snack serving of crisps or pretzels
  • Woman’s fist - another way of visualising a serving of vegetables, or one piece of whole fruit
  • Small handful or golf ball - 1/4 cup of dried fruit
  • A matchbox - a 1 oz serving of meat, or a serving of cheese
  • Deck of cards, or the palm of your hand (excluding fingers) - a 3oz serving (recommended serving) of meat, fish or poultry, or ten chips/french fries
  • Thin paperback book - a 8 oz serving of meat
  • Check book - a serving of fish (approximately 3 oz)
  • Tennis ball - 1/2 cup of pasta, or a serving of ice cream
  • Computer mouse - a medium baked potato
  • Compact disc - one serving of pancake or small waffle
  • Thumb tip or one dice - one teaspoon of margarine
  • A ping pong ball - two tablespoons of peanut butter
  • Small milk carton - 8 oz glass of milk
  • A baseball - 8 oz cup of yogurt, one cup of beans, or one cup of dry cereal
  • If you have certain foods you tend to eat all the time (like for me it's sesame seeds) then weight those once. I buy my seeds in bulk, then weight them into individual Ziplock baggies. No need to weight every time, once is enough!

Oh - when you're at a resturant or a family dinner here is what I suggest:

  • Always get dressings on the side. Even dipping each forkful will give you less dressing then they usually put on. Try to stick to the vinegrettes, but if you MUST get the ceasar then dip or use the biggest spoon and put 1 1/2 spoon fuls on your salad ONLY.
  • As soon as you're plate is placed in front of you ask for a doggie bag. Immediately bag up at least 1/2 of your food. It's appaling the size of the plates here in America. You'll be less tempted to over eat if the food simply isn't there.
  • Always leave food on you're me, the starving children in China won't care.
  • If you're going to a family dinner, and you know they'll hound you into eating high-calorie foods, ask for a desert plate and use this instead of a full dinner plate. It will help you to minimize the damage of those high cal foods.

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